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Aboriginal Treaties Webquest (Grade 9)


Government/ Aboriginals
Division/Grade Level

Division III
Grade 9
Time Frame

Two 40-minute classes

Lesson Overview

This lesson will involve the students in an online exercise intended to acquaint them with the process of negotiations that took place with western Canada's native populations in the late 1800s. The students will work in pairs to examine the processes and agreements that led to the signing of Treaty 6 at Fort Carlton and Fort Pitt in Manitoba.


Through this lesson students will gain a better understanding of the Aboriginal treaties in Canada through web-based research, and then will have the opportunity to share their findings through the creation of a webpage.


Students will:

1. understand the reasons for the Treaties that were signed with the Aboriginals;
2. understand the complexity of the negotiations.


Students will:

1. use and interpret historical maps;
2. examine historical documents with regard to bias and context;
3. organize and synthesize researched information;
4. develop historical thinking skills by explaining the issues and problems from the past.


Students will:

1. be encouraged to develop an appreciation for the history of the Aboriginal people in Canada;
2. be encouraged to understand the complexity of the issues surrounding the signing of the Treaties.

Curricular Connections

Social Studies
New Vocabulary


Peel Prairie Portal Resource Materials:

* Peel #1765
Canada. Privy Council. Committee on Indians. Canada. Department of Indian Affairs
Descriptions and plans of certain Indian reserves in the province of Manitoba and the North West Treaties, 1889 . [Ottawa: Department of Indian Affairs, 1889].

* #0940
Morris, Alexander
The treaties of Canada with the Indians of Manitoba and the North-West Territories: Including the negotiations on which they were based, and other information relating thereto . Toronto: Bedfords, Clarke & Co. 1880. pp.214-222.

* #0770
Canada. Treaties, etc.
Treaty no.6 between Her Majesty the Queen and the Plain and Wood Cree Indians, and other tribes of Indians, at Fort Carleton, Fort Pitt and Battle River, with adhesions . Ottawa [1876?]

* #2864
Laird, David
Our Indian treaties . Winnipeg: Manitoba Free Press Co., 1905

Other Resource Materials

1. Treaties Map
2. Webquest URL
3. Treaties Organizer link

Developing the Lesson
Introduction or Opening Activity

This lesson will allow students to explore the creation of treaties with the Native Canadians in the late 1880s. The information is presented in the form of a Webquest. Students will enjoy the opportunity to “search” the Internet in a controlled manner while finding answers to questions about the creation of Treaty 6.

Purpose of the Lesson

It is important that the students learn about the process used by the Government of Canada as it created treaties and/or agreements with Canada’s First Peoples.

Presentation of New Material

Give the class the URL for the Treaties webquest (Webquest URL). Students are to work their way through the assignment as indicated on the web page. It is suggested that the students work in same sex pairs sharing a computer.

Check for Understanding

Monitor students' progress through the webquest, helping them where necessary.
Independent Practice

As the students complete the graphic organizer contained within the webquest, check to see that answers are complete and detailed.

Closing Activity

Discuss the answers to the questions contained in the webquest.

1. On what kinds of land did the Natives live initially? Was it generally good or poor land?
2. What were some of the land’s attributes? Why did the government and the Crown desire Native lands?
3. What did the Natives trade?
4. What did the government promise the Natives in return, and for what time period?


The teacher may wish to have the answers to the webquest turned in for evaluation.

Follow-Up Activities

A logical continuation of this assignment is to continue with the lesson entitled The Treaty – Guaranteed Forever? This lesson continues the examination of treaties with a focus on the Aboriginal in today’s society.

By E.A. Keith and S.J. Whyte